It was an emotional farewell for a group of trekkers who set off on a trip of a lifetime.
Crowds waved goodbye to their loved ones who boarded a coach ready to conquer Peru’s Machu Picchu in aid of St John’s Hospice.
The team of 46 women and men departed from the Lancaster charity base on Tuesday to begin their ten day trip.
It was a particularly emotional day for trekker Becky Cluney, who said goodbye to her partner and three-month-old baby Noah. “I’m nervous about leaving my baby Noah but I know I’ll be looked after by the team and I’ll make the most of a life time trip,” said Becky, from Lancaster.
Becky was among the team who took part in the China trek in 2016, which raised more than £140,000 for the hospice.
“After completing China with a brilliant bunch of people I couldn’t say no, even having a baby three months ago hasn’t stopped me!
“I have joined a new family with the group and know they will support me endlessly.”
For the Peru challenge the trekkers have been fundraising for 18 months and have raised more than £200,000 so far.
Fundraising events have been many and varied from collection boxes and buckets to charity balls, sky dives and music nights.
This is the second trek for Gary Butler, from Morecambe, who is an avid fundraiser for the hospice.
So far Gary has raised £6,700 for the hospice after holding a number of events in the resort.
“Peru is a place in the world I’ve always wanted to go to and also I wanted to do something in memory of my mum and dad who were supported by the hospice,” said Gary.
Lancaster Guardian and Visitor content editor Debbie Butler and husband Alan are also part of the Peru trek team and have raised £3,800.
The ten day trip follows the Lares trail and will reach heights of up to 4,600m.
They will finish the journey at Machu Picchu.
Keep an eye on St John’s Hospice website for regular updates.
Pictures by Andy Cruxton.